September 2, 2011 / 9:25 AM / in 8 years

Germans oppose bailout boost, critical of Merkel: poll

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a news conference during her visit in Ljubljana August 30, 2011. REUTERS/Srdjan Zivulovic

BERLIN (Reuters) - Two thirds of Germans surveyed in a poll think their parliament should not ratify more money for the euro-zone bailout fund and agree with former chancellor Helmut Kohl that Angela Merkel’s government is undermining Germany’s influence abroad.

Center-right Chancellor Merkel is trying to face down a threatened revolt in her own bloc in parliament over a September 29 vote to ratify more money and powers for the euro rescue fund.

She was also publicly criticized by her ex-mentor Kohl, Germany’s longest-serving post-war chancellor and architect of German reunification, over policy on Europe, the United States and Libya, saying Berlin had “no view or idea” about where it was going.

An opinion poll by Infratest dimap for public broadcaster ARD suggested 68 percent of Germans agree with Kohl’s comments published in a magazine last week, while 66 percent think the Merkel government has “lost its grip” on the euro crisis.

Two thirds said they were opposed to giving more funds for the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and over half were against introducing common euro-zone bonds — a proposal the German government has energetically rejected so far.

At the same time, 64 percent believed European countries should coordinate policy more closely, suggesting most Germans are reluctant to fund more bailouts but are not “eurosceptic” in the broader sense.

Reporting by Stephen Brown; Editing by Mark Heinrich

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